nuclear missile

 “Why would a police officer arrest someone who was protesting at a nuclear facility? Because it’s his job? Isn’t it everyone’s ‘job’ to do away with the causes of cancer?” — demonstrator participating in a blockade at the entrance of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, June 21, 1982

Sick joke? Well, perhaps I should have simply said that raising money for cancer research is a sad waste of time, given the fact that we’re ignoring the environmental causes of cancer to the degree that we have been doing for decades. It’s the New York street streak in me that brings sick joke to mind.

Let’s focus on the radionuclides released by nuclear weapons facilities. They are released to the ground, water and air during normal operations and accidents, including unreported transportation accidents. Routinely.

It is important to remember that no definitive health studies have been done of citizens who live near nuclear weapons facilities, with the exception of downwinders in Utah and the Marshall Islanders.

I can provide the reader with select documentation regarding water and ground impacts, upon request. But I’m going to focus exclusively here on radionculides which are released to the atmosphere at almost all nuclear weapons facilities in the past, as definitive documentation cannot be collected by reputable sources today, given the present governmental restrictions on research  which have been in place over the course of the last few federal administrations.

Uranium was released to the air at the gaseous diffusion plants at Portsmouth, Ohio (24,000 pounds between 1955 and 1984), Paducah, Kentucky (130,000 pounds between 1952 and 1983) and Oak Ridge, Tennessee (23,000 pounds between 1946 and 1983). Uranium was also been released  to the atmosphere at the Y-12 Plant (17,000 pounds between 1956 and 1983), Feed Materials Production Center in Fernald, Ohio (210,000 pounds between 1952 and 1984), and the RMI Extrusion Plant in Ashtabula, Ohio (1,900 pounds between 1962 and 1984).

Uranium has been purposely vaporized by chemical explosions at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories, and Pantex. Uranium is an alpha emitter and known to cause lung cancer when inhaled. Uranium decays in turn to a sequence of daughter products, most of which  are also high energy alpha emitters.

This is serious stuff. A dynamic that continues to this day… far away from the spotlights provided in academic circles. Ignored by cancer-centered non-profits. Intentionally buried by our mainstream media outlets. Enablers.

Plutonium was released to the air at the Rocky Flats Plant, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Hanford, Mound Laboratory, the Savannah River Plant, and during bomb tests which vented to the atmosphere. Hanford is really worth checking into these days, as some decent — but marginalized — journalists are doing.

A fire at the Rocky Flats Plant in 1957 spread extensive plutonium contamination in the Denver area. Plutonium which lands on the ground can be resuspended in the air and inhaled. Plutonium is an alpha emitter and an extremely potent carcinogen. No question about it. Microgram quantities are sufficient to cause lung cancer. And in addition to plutonium, americium-241 is also a potent alpha emitter. Americium-241 was recovered  from recycled  nuclear warheads at the Rocky Flats Plant and packaged for sale at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Americium-241 was also released to the atmosphere — unannounced — at these facilities. Yes, let’s build more nuclear weapons to protect the public.

And collect funds for cancer research while we’re at it. Let’s give generously to that worthy cause while we turn a blind eye to what so many of our tax dollars are supporting. Let’s be… patriotic, by all means. Enablers.

In addition to direct releases to the air, alpha emitters have also been extensively transported within the Department of Energy weapons complex. Approximately 3300 pounds were in transit or in process at any given time back in the day I’m focusing on; I’ve found that reliable figures are hard to come by today. Plutonium triggers were trucked between Rocky Flats Plant and the Pantex Plant, and truck accidents were fairly frequent; the Department of Energy — when pressed — reported 173 accidents from 1975 to 1987.

In the form of a metal, plutonium can burn in air and also be dispersed. Thus, a severe truck accident involving a fire is especially serious. Persons along transportation routes are in potential jeopardy, obviously. A very small amount of plutonium released in a metropolitan area would cause a large number of lung cancers. But, yes, let’s do all we can to keep those evil foreign countries from developing nuclear capability.

Transuranic waste is also transported on the highways. Large-scale shipments of such waste moves to the underground cavity in Carlsbad, New Mexico quite often. And elsewhere… to places which are not well known.

Contact Wilma Hawes for elaboration at




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  1. Gayle Roller (@GayleRoller) says:

    And remember all that pink crap sold to “benefit” breast cancer research. I see that bright pink and think how many cancers from the dyes, stabilizers, plasticizers, etc.

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